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Eggplant and tomato salad

Time 1 hour
Yields Serves 6 to 8
Eggplant and tomato salad
(Los Angeles Times)
1

Prick the eggplants in a few places with a pointed knife to prevent them from exploding. Turn them over the flame of a gas burner or hot barbecue, or under the broiler, until the skin is charred all over (this gives them a distinctive smoky flavor) and they feel very soft when you press them. Alternatively, place them on a sheet of foil on an oven tray and roast them in the hottest preheated oven for 45 to 55 minutes, until the skins are wrinkled and they are very soft.

2

When cool enough to handle, peel and drop them into a strainer or colander with small holes. Press out as much of the water and juices as possible. While still in the colander, chop with a pointed knife, then mash with a fork or wooden spoon, letting the juices escape through the holes.

3

Mix the eggplant puree with the lemon juice, garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper, parsley and mint. Spread the puree on a large, flat serving plate. Sprinkle with the scallions, tomatoes and pomegranate seeds, if using.

From “Arabesque” by Claudia Roden.

Betty Hallock was the deputy Food editor, covering all things food and drink for the Saturday section and Daily Dish blog. She started at The Times in 2001 in the Business section and previously worked on the National desk at the Wall Street Journal in New York. She’s a graduate of UCLA and New York University.
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